Do Dogs Like Collars or Are They Uncomfortable For Them?

Last Updated on July, 2024

Think about the dog’s perspective for a minute; you should wear this strange thing around your neck with your best friend.

How would you feel if someone did that to you? And, of course, this beckons the question: Do dogs like wearing collars?

A collar represents convenience for many dog owners. It’s easy to identify and leash your dog, and many dog collars give your furry friend a sense of style and identity!

But ease for you is one thing you may have wondered: does my dog even like his collar? And it’s a reasonable inquiry, too.

The thing is, in most instances, dogs love wearing collars! The reasons behind them will be looked into in the next section.

Quick Summary

It could be concluded that most dogs do like collars. This is because collars provide a sense of security and identification for them, and can also be comfortable and stylish.

Dog collars serve various purposes, such as aiding in training, monitoring behavior, ensuring safety, and instilling a sense of responsibility.

Properly fitting a dog collar is important to ensure comfort and safety, and owners should also consider the material and their dog’s lifestyle when choosing a collar.

Why Does Your Dog Like Wearing a Collar?

a labrador dog biting a dog collar

Several factors regarding how your dog can become fond of his collar exist. Below are a few reasons why your fur baby loves his collar.


Dogs are intelligent animals, and they are knowledgeable enough to associate items and gestures with other things.

They would quickly identify that their collar, the strange thing around them, is connected with you, their beloved master.


Many dog collars have identification tags. Many of them are cute and uniquely styled to the personality of each dog.

And it’s common for dogs to quite quickly assimilate this physical accessory of theirs as their own identity. 

And it could also make your dog obsessed with the collar too. 


The right collar with measurements that suit your dog can be very comfortable. It could be a lovely and secure embrace around your dog’s neck!

This would only be better if the collar is a comfortable fit with the proper material and texture. 

The right collar with the proper measurements in your dog’s neck is a symbol of security for them when you take them out for a walk!


It’s entirely possible that your dog likes his collar’s unique color or texture! This would make them see their collar as a personal favorite!

Enjoying Routine

A routine lifestyle provides good mental stimulation for your furry friends. They are animals of habit, after all. 

Gradually, your dog’s reaction to the collar will be a positive one when they associate it with a good part of their routine, like going for a walk. 

The Importance of Dog Collars

Dog wearing 3 collars

However, as explained below, a dog collar serves a vital purpose to many dog owners.

Helps With Dog Training

Wearing a collar would help better your dog’s discipline and obedience for all forms of training, from potty training to walking. 

Those with dog training experience, from casual trainers to trainers of service dogs, should put on a collar as well. 

Even rescue dogs need to wear collars during the training process.

This will help your dog better understand who’s in charge.

Helps With Monitoring Their Behavior

Most collars would help you control what your dog should and shouldn’t do. It keeps your dog’s behavior in check.

Your dog will quickly understand what should and shouldn’t be done and become a very obedient pet.

Ensures Dog’s Safety

Dogs collar, ideally one with a harness to restrain them when they pull, will not only keep your dog safe from accidents but will also ensure they are safe from other pets as well.

At times, you may stumble randomly onto some other dog’s territory, and they may not be too happy about it.

Dogs are very instinctive and impulsive creatures and can be easily distracted by a new smell they detect! And for this reason, wearing a collar could save their life. 

Creates a Sense of Responsibility in Your Dog

By wearing a collar, your dog will quickly learn the dos and don’ts of going for walks and playtimes.

This will help build up a basic sense of responsibility in your dog and benefit them in the long run.

Then, over some time, you can be confident enough to have your dog walk alongside you without a collar!

Should Your Dog Wear a Collar All the Time?

This is a question you would get varying answers to since it depends on your dog’s personality and typical behavior, as well as the lifestyle you and your furry companion have.

Some valuable insights from experts suggest that you should remove your dog’s collar before they go to bed. This is to prevent any trouble with their breathing.

And if your lifestyle is spent out in the open, forests, parks, and the great outdoors, we suggest you keep your collar on your pet most of the time.

In the instance they get lost, they will be identified as someone’s pet.

How Dogs React When Their Collar is Removed?

Dog wearing a collar

You may have seen your dog whimper or look around confused once you’ve removed his collar.

Many dogs feel vulnerable when their collar is removed. It is a common psychological occurrence that has been observed countless times before. 

Dogs are creatures who adhere to a routine. When an object associated with regularity is taken away from them, in this instance, the collar, then it is likely to trigger some anxiety in them.

An example of this is humorously highlighted in this article.

You may also see your dog lick his collar after you’ve taken it off him. And you may have been puzzled why he did that (I mean, you can’t eat a collar after all!)

But your dog does this to show that the collar is his, which is great! Since it shows that he has accepted the collar as a part of his identity.

When Should I Remove My Dog’s Collar?

You may have wondered when the proper time would be to take your dog’s collar off.

Even if your life is spent within the four walls of your house, it is always best to keep your dog’s collar on.

But it is always advisable to remove the collar when they go to sleep. This is to prevent any hazard this could cause in their breathing and ensure that their airway tract isn’t obstructed when they are sleeping. 

Another instance that would call for you to remove your dog’s collar is during playtime with other dogs. Collars could cause unintentional abrasions along with other dogs, so you would likely want to reduce this possibility.

Additionally, collars could cause various conditions to your dog’s skin, like sores and irritations. 

Often, you would know when your dog has these if he tries to scratch his throat area constantly. During these instances, a useful tool for removing your dog’s collar is advisable. 

Why Does Your Dog Dislike His Collar?

This is most likely to happen if your dog is wearing a collar for the first time.

Your dog would often dislike his collar if it is too tight and does not suit his measurements and neck circumference. 

As a dog owner, it is your responsibility to make sure that you find a collar that fits properly for your dog.

Additionally, many dogs dislike the overhead collar, the ones where you have to put over their muzzle.

This can cause an uncomfortable tightness around their airway and cause issues in breathing and swallowing.

The collar would also be a complicated premise to accept for most dogs since it would feel like their freedom is being restricted, and it could worsen if any of the above conditions occur alongside it.

What to Do if Your Dog Dislikes Their Collar?

Do dogs like collars

For owners trying their best to get their little pooch to put on a collar, it can be pretty difficult! 

Dogs are very clear about what they dislike, and persuading them to change can be tricky. 

Our advice is to try not to run and chase your dog to get them to wear a collar; this will only make them associate unpleasant experiences with the collar. 

Your dog will only agree to wear the collar if he can associate it with positive experiences.

So, even when putting the collar around him, remember to be patient, calm, and gentle when doing so. 

Positive reinforcement is critical here; use a lot of encouragement when your dog refuses to put on the collar.

And when you get your pup to wear the collar, have a bag of treats nearby so you can give them one!

Your pet would quickly associate treats with his collar and soon get used to wearing his collar.

Another advisable method would be putting your dog’s collar on before he goes for a walk. 

It’s a well-known fact that dogs love going for walks, and they will soon connect the collar to going out for a stroll in the park. 

(Heck, my dog already knows what the word ‘walk’ means; you need to spell it out in our own home so he doesn’t go nuts!)

This is an excellent way of training your dog to accept their collar, and, what’s more, it provides a perfect opportunity for bonding with your pet!

How to Properly Fit a Dog Collar?

Dog collar size chart

Another reason why your dog may dislike his collar is because you are not fitting it the correct way around him.

You are legally bound to put a collar around your pup’s neck so they can be found easily in case they get lost. 

First, remember to measure the circumference of your neck using a measuring tape so you don’t get a collar that’s either too tight or too loose.

Then, add one to three inches to that measurement, depending on the size of your dog. For small dogs, add one inch; for medium-sized dogs, add two inches; and for larger dogs, add three inches.

A dog should have a snug and comfortable collar; anything too tight would irritate them, and anything too loose could slip off them and get lost. 

Tips on Selecting the Right Dog Collar

The two-finger rule is an easy hack to remember when adjusting your dog’s collar.

This is when the space between your furry friend’s skin and collar should be just enough for two fingers to slip in and out of. Not too loose, not too tight.

Also, ensure that the material the collar is made of does not irritate them or create rashes on their skin. 

Nylon collars are great options if you want durable collars; they are also excellent for those of budget too.

Another tip to keep in mind is to purchase a collar that could fit your dog during any potential weight gain or weight loss. (Also, a reminder to make sure your dog gets enough exercise!)

Additionally, pick a collar and leash that would suit the lifestyle you have with your dog! Be it a hike in a scenic forest or playtime in the park, make sure to pick a collar that best suits how you spend quality time with your furry friend!

Further reading:


If the measurements are correct and the material is not irritating to their fur, then wearing a collar should not be uncomfortable for your dog. However, your dog may show signs of discomfort, such as constantly scratching their neck area.

Your dog wants his collar on because he associates it with something pleasant. This can be seen when he sniffs or licks the collar, showing that he wants it on him. This indicates that you have successfully made the collar a positive item for him.

Yes, it is acceptable and recommended for dogs to wear a collar at home. However, it is suggested to remove their collar before bedtime.

It is acceptable for a dog to wear a collar for extended periods, as long as they have adjusted to wearing it. However, it is recommended to remove the collar when the dog is sleeping.

Most dogs become scared when their collars are touched because they associate it with negative experiences, such as punishment or scolding. It is important to remain calm and work on alleviating this fear gradually over time.


You need to remember that a dog can dislike his collar at first but can grow to love it if he associates it with happy experiences. 

Just make sure you select a collar that matches your dog’s specific neck size, as a well-fitting collar is essential for your pet’s comfort and mental well-being, which should always be your top priority.

Now that you know the answer to ‘’do dogs like collars’’, check the article linked below for the best collars available on the market if you haven’t purchased one already.

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Thomas Villalpando
Thomas Villalpando is the main author of Dogs Academy. He spends his time reading, training, and working with several Dogs' behaviors. He has been featured in MSN, Yahoo Finance, The Sun, Entrepreneur & More. You can find more about him here.

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